Sansanwal, Rayna M., Jeffrey L. Derevensky, and Belle Gavriel-Fried. “What Mental Health Professionals in Israel Know and Think about Adolescent Problem Gambling.” International Gambling Studies (early view, online first).
Mental health professionals are well versed in addressing multiple adolescent risky behaviours and play a primary role in the identification of and referral process and service provision for young people who engage in such behaviours. Given their ‘person-in-environment’ approach, training in multi-sectoral collaboration, and awareness of social policies, social workers are especially equipped to provide needed mental health services to young people. The aim of the current study was to examine Israeli mental health professionals’ awareness of and attitudes towards adolescent high-risk behaviours, including gambling. Child psychologists, social workers and school counsellors (N = 273) completed an online survey addressing concerns related to high-risk behaviours. Findings revealed that social workers perceived gambling as being among one of the least concerning adolescent mental health issues and reported feeling the least confident in their abilities to provide services to young people with gambling problems. The results suggest the importance of youth gambling addictions being incorporated into social work training curricula.
This study investigates social workers’ preferences regarding four main therapeutic orientations: psychodynamic therapy (PDT), cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), client-centered therapy (CCT), and eco-systemic therapy (EST). In total, 679 social workers (528 Jewish and 151 Palestinian) reported their beliefs regarding the efficacy of the four therapeutic orientations, and 343 additional social workers (193 Jewish and 150 Palestinian) reported how often they apply the therapeutic orientations in their practice. The present study revealed similarities, but also some incongruence when comparing the social workers’ beliefs in the efficacy of the different therapeutic orientations and the frequency of their actual use in practice. Socio-demographic characteristics of the social workers explained a significant albeit small proportion of the variance in the frequency of use of the different therapeutic orientations. Finally, the results obtained demonstrated that social workers tend to prefer different therapeutic interventions when working with clients belonging to different ethnic groups. Implications for therapist training and practice are discussed.
This article offers an ethnographic account of the professional activities of mental health practitioners, employed by the state’s religious education system. I analyze various models implemented by practitioners for the purposes of preparing pupils for the state-mandated evacuation of Jewish settlers from Gaza and the West Bank. By focusing on the interaction between psychological and religious-national cultural frameworks I show how practitioners imbue familiar professional concepts with new meanings and create hybrid models of intervention.
In Treatment (2008–2010) was the first Israeli series to be remade for US television, and its largely positive critical reception established a reputation for Israel as a home for quality drama – setting the stage for the remake of Hatufim (Prisoners of War, 2009–2012) into Homeland (2011–). This article takes up the case of In Treatment to examine how the process of transnational television remaking can illuminate the concept of US quality television in the millennial era. Arguing that the aesthetic and industrial brand of ‘quality’ is defined by the theme and device of transformation, the article analyses how the American remake gradually diverges from the original series Be’Tipul (2005–2008) to accentuate this concept in its stories and narrative style. The resulting text presents the quintessential contemporary example of what I call the television ‘treatment’ genre: a mode of programming that operates by centripetal narrative complexity to present ‘serial selves,’ or characters whose time in therapy produces progressive or regressive modifications in their emotional state. When read against the more halting and circular narratives of Be’Tipul, this format demonstrates a clear socio-cultural remapping of its topic: where therapeutic culture in America is presented as a site that is underpinned by contested neoliberal ideologies on the government of subjectivity.
We sketch a variety of institutional, discursive, professional, and personal ‘vectors’, dating back to the 1980s, in order to explain how ‘national trauma’ was able to go from a cultural into a professional category in Israeli mental health during the Al-Aqsa Intifada (2000–2005). Our genealogy follows Ian Hacking’s approach to transient mental illnesses, both illustrating its fertility and expanding its horizon. Thus, we also explore the dynamics that developed in the Israeli mental health community with the advent of ‘national trauma’: while the vast majority of Israeli psychologists and psychiatrists did not adopt the category, they embraced much of its underlying logic, establishing a link between Israeli identity and the mental harm said to be caused by Palestinian terror. Remarkably, the nexus of national identity and collective psychic vulnerability also prompted the cooperation of Jewish and Palestinian-Israeli mental health scholars seeking to explore the psychological effect that the minority status of Israeli Palestinians had on them during the Al-Aqsa Intifada.
This article explores the development of a unique, culturally sensitive, designated academic occupational therapy programme for the Ultra-Orthodox (Haredi) minority in Israel. This normative university environment did not provide the opportunity for Haredi participation due to the lack of consideration of the strong commitment to a modest way of life of this community. This prevented their participation in academia and resultant employment that are necessary for economic advancement of the community.
A follow-up survey that tracked the programme’s graduates’ participation in the workforce was used to determine the success of the initial goal of the establishment of the designated programme.
Slightly above 97% of the respondents worked as occupational therapists during the first year after completing their bachelor’s degree. The employment data obtained from the graduates showed that the central goal of the Council of Higher Education has been achieved. The designated culturally adapted occupational therapy programme has provided varied employment opportunities for its graduates in diverse professional environments.
With the implementation of this programme, the occupational therapy department of the University of Haifa has created greater accessibility of the profession to both the occupational therapy providers and the recipients of occupational therapy intervention as well as serve as a model for other communities.
Eisikovits, Zvi, Jonathan Davidov, Laura Sigad, and Rachel Lev-Wiesel. “The Social Construction of Disclosure: The Case of Child Abuse in Israeli Society.” In Mandatory Reporting Laws and the Identification of Severe Child Abuse and Neglect (ed. Ben Mathews and Donald C. Bross; Dordrecht and New York: Springer, 2015), 395-413.
Based on 40 in-depth qualitative interviews with professionals, including law-enforcement personnel, educators, and mental health and health-care professionals, this chapter presents a study that describes and analyzes an insider’s view of the ways in which child abuse professionals perceive and understand the disclosure of violence. We found that disclosure is a function of social processes related to the values, ideologies, ways of thinking, and interests of the various social agents involved in the process. Thus, disclosure is not an objective fact-finding process and the subsequent assignment of visibility and proper societal reaction, but rather a social construction.
This book is an invitation to observe the practice of one of the most dominant communities in Israel, and yet one of its most closed ones: the therapeutic community. Through a four-year anthropological field work (2004-2008) among two of the most prominent associations in Israel – Natal (“Israel’s Trauma Center for Victims of Terror and War”) and the “Israel Trauma Coalition” – the chapters of this book trace the inevitable intersection between professional questions of clinical diagnosis, treatment and prevention of PTSD in the context of the Israeli-Arab conflict with political question of group identity and power relations: what differences exist between therapists on the meaning of traumatic experiences and its moral boundaries? What consensus is reached regarding practices of aid and funds allocation, and what is the connection between it and the questions of group identity; including political, ethnic, and social class aspects?
This ethnographic journey will shed light on the development of politics around the therapeutic practice of trauma in two sequential instances: (1) the institutional instance will address the establishment of a new therapeutic home, through the extraordinary juncture of therapists, donors and advertisers; (2) the professional instance will present the branching of four circles of therapeutic occupation of trauma: the “clinical core” among soldiers; the practice of the tense relationship between “primary” trauma of a man and the “secondary” trauma of a woman, his spouse; the growing distance from the “clinical mothership,” for the sake of intervention among “risk groups” from Be’er-Sheva in the South to Daliyat al-Karmel in the north; and the emphasis on the prevention of trauma, through activities such as “strength and immunity” in Sderot. These examinations will demonstrate how the therapeutic practice is far from representing a single objective reality with a clear professional truth. Instead, it will reveal the existence of a polyphonic and multi-participant network of reciprocities surrounding the therapeutic practice of trauma, between various social locations and diverse worldviews.